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Hawaii Firm Recalls Ground Beef Products Due To Possible E. Coli O157:H7 Contamination

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Recall Release CLASS I RECALL
FSIS-RC-069-2012 HEALTH RISK: HIGH

Congressional and Public Affairs
(202) 720-9113
Richard J. McIntire

WASHINGTON, October 22, 2012 – Higa Meat & Pork Market, a Honolulu, HI establishment, is recalling approximately 4,100 pounds of ground beef products that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today. 

The following products are subject to recall:
10-lb. bags of "HIGA MARKET-GROUND BEEF BULK" - 1 to 6 bags per carton/case.

Each case bears the establishment number "EST. 12457M" inside the USDA mark of inspection, as well as the identifying case code number: "291." The products were produced on Oct. 17, 2012 and were distributed to restaurants in the Oahu, HI area. 

The problem was discovered by FSIS and occurred as a result of the products testing positive for E. coli O157:H7 and being shipped prior to the company receiving test results. FSIS and the company have received no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of these products. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact a healthcare provider. 

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers (including restaurants) of the recall and to ensure that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers. 

E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause bloody diarrhea, dehydration, and in the most severe cases, kidney failure. The very young, seniors and persons with weak immune systems are the most susceptible to foodborne illness. 

FSIS advises all consumers to safely prepare their raw meat products, including fresh and frozen, and only consume ground beef that has been cooked to a temperature of 160° F. The only way to confirm that ground beef is cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria is to use a food thermometer that measures internal temperature. 

Consumers and media with questions regarding the recall should contact the company's Vice President, Sheldon Wright, at (808) 531-3591. 

Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at www.AskKaren.gov or via smartphone at m.askkaren.gov. "Ask Karen" live chat services are available Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.
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